ISLAMABAD, Aug. 15 (Xinhua) -- The Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari Sunday called for greater international support and assistance to cope with the gigantic task of relief and rehabilitation of the flood victims and mega programme of reconstruction of the property and infrastructure damaged by the deadly floods.
In a meeting with the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, the president said that the challenge was so huge for any government or party to undertake on its own and added that it could be faced only with the rigorous efforts of the people of Pakistan, Pakistani community living abroad and the support and assistance of the international community and donor agencies.
Briefing the media about the meeting, spokesperson to the president Farhatullah Babar said that the president briefed the UN Secretary General about the colossal damage to life, property, livestock and infrastructure as a result of the unprecedented floods in the history of Pakistan.
The spokesperson said that the president informed the Secretary General that 71 districts throughout the country had been hit by floods. Nearly 1400 people have been killed, over 720,000 housed destroyed and over 1.2 million people adversely affected.
The extent of total damage to life, property, cattle head and infrastructure may be far more than what initial estimates suggested, the president said.
Zardari said that the government and people of Pakistan are thankful to the UN for immediately appealing to the world community for nearly 460 million U.S. dollars in emergency aid.
Ban Ki-Moon expressed grief and sorrow over the loss of precious lives and massive destruction of infrastructure and property in the floods in Pakistan. He said that UN would stand by the government and people of Pakistan in these critical times. He pledged continued support and assistance of the UN for the humanitarian relief and rehabilitation of the flood victims.
The spokesperson said that after meeting at the Presidency, Zardari and UN Secretary General together left for visit of the flood affected areas.